Justin Bieber has had his share of controversy — some would say more than his share, but I'm feeling diplomatic. However, the young star tweeted something on Thursday that felt like first time I'd seen proof that Justin Bieber has turned his attitude around. After a lackluster performance on BBC Radio 1's Live Lounge, fans shared their disappointment, and I think the old Bieber would have responded with bravado, insisting he knows best. But the new Bieber was shockingly self-aware, and actually apologized for anyone he might have let down. What is this new leaf we're turning over? I love it.
Thankfully, Bieber has been out of his Egging Houses Phase, his Abandoning Animals Phase, and his Peeing In Buckets Phase for a while. But, as recently as a year ago, he was still firmly in the Stomping Out Of Situations That Don't Go His Way Phase, which, while a definite improvement on those previously mentioned, was still pretty childish. As recently as a year ago, Bieber stormed out of a concert in Oslo, Norway, because he didn't think his audience was being appreciative enough, and, a few days after that, he brought a performance to a halt to scold his fans for clapping the wrong way, and to teach them how to do it correctly. To be honest, I thought that was just his response to any kind of criticism from his fans — even perceived criticism — and I figured it always would be.
But after dropping the ball on Live Lounge, where he was booked to sing covers of Tracy Chapman and 2Pac songs, and do acoustic versions of some of his own songs, Bieber did something unexpected: he owned up. After taking some heat for the flubs, and his awkwardness in answering interview questions, Bieber took to Twitter to take responsibility:
Call me crazy, but I feel like he's actually sincere. It was a long road, but I think we might have finally gotten back to the Justin Bieber who cares more about his fans' experiences than his own, and is bummed instead of defensive when he doesn't come through for them. I like that he acknowledged that he was nervous, because that's a very vulnerable thing to do; it would be much easier to blame it on some equipment malfunction or something that took place off-camera and could never be proved.
However, Bieber did the good thing and the hard thing, which was to admit that he wasn't at his best, explain why, and pledge to do better next time. Doesn't get much better than that.